Lena Hugo

MULTI-MEDIA ARTIST

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Lena Hugo is based in Pretoria, South Africa. She focuses on pastel drawings, but throughout her career, her mediums have also included charcoal, oils, fibre arts and relief printing. Her highly finished, detailed, expressions of people are mostly depictions of South African and migrant hand labourers and her fibre artworks were often made from their clothing.

“I believe that women are strong. Not only spiritually, but physically as well. They have the ability to protect themselves, each other, children, nature and even men against harm. Give her a crown, for me, is a message through art from a woman whom has been underestimated and won, to all the women out there who constantly needs to fight a battle to prove themselves. A Message that says that she can be, and already is, not just the survivor, but the glorious victor of her story.“
Beth Diane Armstrong

SCULPTOR | PAINTER | MIXED MEDIA

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Currently living and working in Johannesburg, Armstrong was born in South Africa. For most of her career, she has found creative expression as a sculptor, making steel sculptures on both monumental and intimate scales. Her practice has largely pivoted around notions of the infinite, and perceiving – and expressing – a sense of weight, both literally and metaphorically.

“I know too many women who have been abused, and I have known abuse myself. The devastation that it wreaks on women’s lives is unacceptable. I have also witnessed the tremendous courage, strength, resilience, and bravery in the woman’s soul. Given the opportunity to create an artwork that may open up conversation and allow women a safe space to share, connect, and celebrate their femininity is an opportunity that I could not turn down.”
Andiswa Bhungane

MIXED-MEDIA ARTIST

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Andy has a passion for creating opulent and lavish art pieces that embody the essence of luxury, based on Johannesburg, South Africa. Andy creates stunning pieces that evoke feelings of extravagance, pleasure and refinement. “My pieces are a celebration of luxury, an ode to beauty and a testament to the human pursuit of excellence.”

“Gender-based Violence is a pervasive problem that affects millions of people worldwide, with women and girls being disproportionately impacted. Supporting initiatives like GHAC, helps to address and reduce the prevalence of GBV in society.  Having lost my mother, Phumzile and my dear niece, Enhle, to GBV, I believe in initiatives that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place by addressing the root causes, promoting positive behavioral change and empowering women.”
Lara Klawikowski

FASHION DESIGNER

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Lara Klawikowski is a South African fashion designer based in Cape Town. She designs wearable art – bespoke womanswear handcrafted at her studio. Her designs are intriguingly tactile and artisanal, with a distinctive artistry, femininity, edge, and other-worldly beauty. She employs unpredictable pattern-cutting and garment construction, organic draping and proportions. Her love for unusual detail, texture and innovative use of fabric has led to constant experimentation with recycled, upcycled and re-fabricated materials.

“When I attended the protest march outside parliament  in 2019 after Uyinene Mrwetyana had been raped and murdered, what resonated with me was how resilient and empowered the women who spoke to the crowd were. They were also victims of GBV but their strength, defiance and determination to end GBV was striking. They had not been crushed. It was beautiful. A different kind of beauty. I felt proud of them and proud to be a woman. I was drawn to be part of the GHAC campaign because I want to honour the beauty of the resilience of GBV victims.”
Sonja Swanepoel

SCUPLTOR | ENVIRONMENTAL ARCHITECT

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Sonja Swanepoel, based in Cape Town, South Africa, is a sculptor and environmental architect who explores our natural world in her art. Themes underpinning her work are a reconnection to nature and the interconnectedness of all things. Her sculptures intend to convey ecological messages about our deteriorating relationship with nature to inspire acts of restoration and conservation.

“It is an honour to be part of the Give her a Crown Campaign as it will challenge me to become more confident. I believe I can make a difference through my art. Equality and opportunity give us all the chance to achieve professionally and help and inspire others.”
Shelley Mokoena

DESIGNER | ARTIST | CREATIVE DIRECTOR

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Shelley Mokoena has established her career through her creative quest for intentional art and design. She embodies an intrinsic and unique approach, rooted in the simplicity of the art of life and living. In 2019, Mokoena founded CONNADE. A Contemporary, Avant garde womenswear brand, with a sophisticated approach to understated detailing. Her designs capture the aura of the women adorned through classic, statement and staple moments, complimented with organic forms to principle silhouettes that weave in structural design. CONNADE is inspired by forms of nature, heritage and expression, creating collections with a sublime impression of wearable art.

“Gender-based violence is a prevalent plague in our country, rooted in systematic inequality and patriarchal privilege. It has detrimental effects on an individual, their families and communities at large – not only physically but psychologically as well. Having grown up in an environment perpetuated by violence, I have a semblance of these effects and I can only imagine how bad it can be when it is experienced in its extreme form. I am inspired to be a part of this campaign because I believe that women embody a divine power that needs to be uplifted instead of being subdued. Furthermore I believe that art is a powerful storytelling tool that can and has inspired positive change, through small and crucial steps to achieve a desired outcome. This campaign is close to my heart, one that deserves the nations’ constant attention and something I wanted to contribute to in my own little way.”
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